SOMEONE HAS TO DIE! Someone has to pay because I failed to offer an appropriate sacrifice, and now I have been rejected!
Most of us may be inclined to shake our heads when we read the story of Cain and Abel. Why would someone kill his sibling when his sibling did nothing wrong? When he did what was right? It’s not so far-fetched when we think of how some people try to kill others today without laying a finger on them. Ostracizing them. Ignoring them. Rejecting them. Disrespecting them. We may not be “killing Abel” in a literal sense, but some of us are “killing able” figuratively.
Cain killed Abel after learning that his own sacrifice was unacceptable to God. This sacrificial offering was the first recorded of many others following in ancient biblical history. Though we are not told, it is believed that God established ahead of time what sacrifice would be acceptable to Him. “Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the Lord. Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the Lord respected Abel and his offering, but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell” (Gen. 4:3-5). Abel’s offering was an authentic act of worship, and it was pleasing to God. But Cain’s offering was not derived from authentic worship and was rebellious, and consequently, it was rejected.
We simply cannot worship God according to our own terms! Spirit and truth are non-negotiables (John 4:24).
Notice that Abel offered the “firstborn of his flock.” He offered a blood sacrifice (cf. Lev. 17:11). Could it be that Cain was deliberately disobedient, offering fruit from the ground instead a blood sacrifice suitable for atonement (cf. 1 John 3:12)?
How do you respond when your brother or sister in Christ offers authentic worship to God, and it shines a negative light on how you offer worship to God? When they actually live sacrificially rather than having it seem so with a hidden agenda to impress others? When they demonstrate a heart of worship in everyday life rather than engaging superficial, pretentious outpourings at Sunday morning service? In many ways, we have been killing able. Killing those who truly love the Lord. Killing those who want to do His will for the sole purpose of giving Him glory.
And why? Why would we want to kill able?
Many times, it is because their regard for the Lord gives rise to our own deficiency in that area. We want to kill their ability to do and function as He has ordained so that we feel better about our own shortcomings. We want to “shut them down,” so to speak, because if we do not, we may have to face the reality that our own offering to God is unacceptable. We want to remove the reminder instead of conforming to God’s standard in obedient love for Him.
The Bible declares that Cain was of the wicked one; his rebellious actions, displaced anger, and heinous act of murder had satanic influence. When we attempt to kill others’ ability to glorify God in whatever manner God has predetermined, we are allowing the enemy to work his desire for death through our own frailties and insecurities.
Don’t kill able! Do as God directed Cain to do: do well, and you will be accepted (Gen. 4:7). Trying to kill what is righteous and honorable in others will not cause us to be favored in God’s sight. It will not change the rejection sign stamped on our offering to God. It will only make the ill and hostile contents of our heart more visible. The only two correct responses when we see that God has favored our brother or sister in Christ because of their authentic and obedient offering to Him, shedding a grand light on our own negligence, is confession and repentance. We must comes up to His standard.
If you are guilty of this, please STOP KILLING ABLE.